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Jens Voigt walks the walk with solo win
Aug 24th, 12. "I'm about 20 days short of turning 41 and I want to keep walking the walk and talking the talk," Jens Voigt said after his impressive solo win today.
"Today was a moment I could give it my best one more time. It was painful but very enjoyable."
Participation in a break turned into an impressive solo stage win for the RadioShack rider in the USA Pro Challenge.
Voigt attacked his breakaway companions on the Independence Pass (3686m) climb to stay away for more than 146km and arrive in Beaver Creek with almost 3min to the next finishers.
It was his first big win since Stage 4 in the 2010 Volta a Catalunya.
"Once in awhile I can almost see a video clip running in my mind that shows me how things will be. Today I was in the break and I could see it all happening. I saw myself attacking and never being seen again. I told myself 'Go now!'
"With the rain, all the uphill, the downhill, wind, whatever else was happening to make the race sticky and nasty – I knew it was affecting the others more than me. It paid off in the end and I'm more than happy with this win.
"I was nervous until I saw the 1km to go banner but my director Lars Michaelsen came up to me then and told me I still had five minutes. So I slowed down a little bit, tried to relax and waved to the crowd. I was just soaking up the emotions."
Voigt's Team Director Lars Michaelsen called the ride extraordinary, "Only a few guys in the peloton are capable of doing this. He's an inspiration for everybody: for Alain Gallopin and me in the car, for the young riders, for every rider in the peloton.
"You need the physics to do it but also the fighting spirit and the angriness to achieve this. After only 12km, with just a 20sec gap, he was determined to go for it, and of course he made the right decision. This is so nice."
Last May at the Amgen Tour of California Voigt earned a 2nd place position in the time trial and noted that perhaps it would be the last time in his career that he'd be on a podium. Today's effort clearly put that concern to rest.
"I think I earned this win the hard way. I knew if I had 2min at the top of Independence Pass that they would never see me again. I was trying not to get ahead of myself and think about the win and stay focused on my ride," he said.
"I did have to say 'Shut Up, Legs!' a few times, but I am just really happy."
Earlier this week the German announced he will continue in the pro-peloton, and with RadioShack Nissan Trek, for the next season.
"I call this the Indian Summer of my career, not the Winter," he said today. "I still receive enormous satisfaction out of helping the boys win. I like looking after them and delivering them to the bottom of a climb in a good position. Then later when they come and say thank you to me, well, that just makes my day."
GC lead yo-yo's againBMC's Tejay van Garderen regained his lead on the strength of his 3rd place finish today. He crossed the finish line three places ahead of previous race leader Christian Vandevelde (Garmin-Sharp), who finished in the same time – 2:58 behind Voigt.
Van Garderen and Vandevelde remain tied in overall time – 17h34m18s – but on tie-breaker criteria the Boulder Colorado rider pulled on the yellow jersey by virtue of his lower sum of cumulative finishes.
"It's nice to have the jersey, but I attacked more looking for seconds," van Garderen said of his stage finish surge.
"So it's too bad I wasn't able to get time. But the jersey is always nice to have."
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